Temporary NHS boss paid 47,000 a month quits

Temporary NHS boss paid 47,000 a month quits

The temporary finance director paid £47,000 a month by a struggling NHS trust has been relieved of his duties, it has emerged. Ian Miller was being the equivalent to an annual salary of £561,000 despite a Government order to halt the "excessive and indefensible" rates paid on short-term contracts.


Barts Health NHS trust, which has the highest bill for agency doctors and nurses and is forecasting the greatest deficit in the history of the NHS, confirmed that he was no longer working for them.


A spokesperson said: “We have previously made clear that we required Ian Miller's support because he was available immediately – for a period of up to six months – and because he had the experience needed to lead the finance department of the largest NHS trust in the country.


"We now have that expertise in-house, and consequently, Ian Miller's short-term contract recently ended.”


The trust suggested that Mr Miller’s contract had come to its natural end last week.


However, it last week said that his position was approved by the Trust Board in February for a period of six months, meaning that it was not due to end until August.


And when speaking to the Daily Telegraph on Sunday evening, Mr Miller, 49, gave no indication that his contract had ended. In a detailed discussion about his salary, he made no reference to his position being recently terminated.


Joyce Robins, co-director of Patient Concern, said the figure was "absolutely ridiculous".


She added: "When you think of all the money that is needed by the NHS and the way people are treated in hospitals, this is just astounding.


"And these are the fat cats presiding over this shambles."


It's time to crack down on rip-off NHS agencies


The development follows an investigation by this newspaper which revealed that Barts — which last year spent a record £80 million on agency doctors and nurses — started paying £46,800 a month for the services of Mr Miller, a temporary finance director, earlier this year. Figures for the last financial year show payments of £78,000 plus VAT were due to be made to the firm Maxentius, of which Mr Miller is a director, for his services in February and March. The sums equate to an annual salary of £561,100.


By comparison, Simon Stevens, the head of the NHS, earns £190,000 a year. In a private letter to the heads of all NHS trusts, leaked to The Daily Telegraph, Jeremy Hunt ordered a clamping down on the practice which allows roving NHS executives to earn up to £600,000 a year. Some senior managers have earned up to £3,000 a day.


Mr Hunt wrote that "although we have reduced the number of senior managers across the NHS by over 1,800" more than a fifth of directors are paid in excess of £142,500, the salary of David Cameron.


"At a time of financial pressure, it is right to question the need to pay so many NHS staff more than the Prime Minister," he added.


Meanwhile, Sir Robert Naylor, chief executive of University College London Hospitals, claimed the best doctors should be offered more money to stop practising and become NHS managers. Sir Robert, chair of the Health Service Journal’s inquiry into the future of NHS leadership, suggested that clinicians were not currently offered suitable financial incentives to join leadership teams.


He said the current NHS system was “very fragmented” with too many organisations and more than 800 posts requiring people at chief executive level.


But he claimed that if a small percentage of the best medics could be persuaded to move into management, it would help to ease the pressure.


Mr Miller told Radio 4’s Today programme: “Our clinicians are some of the brightest people in our society and yet they’ve not been encouraged to become involved in leadership positions in the past." 


Asked what was stopping them making the move, he replied: “There are a number of reasons. They are not incentivised financially to do so. Particularly here in London, clinicians can probably go and earn as much on a Saturday morning in Harley Street as they would get paid for a week working as a clinical leader in a hospital.


“I think what Jeremy Hunt is talking about is non-clinical leaders. We are saying there are far too many organisations (within the NHS) and we should significantly reduce that number so we can reward clinicians adequately for coming in to take on these positions.


"There needs to be some incentive... and that may mean paying them more money to allow them to come into these positions.”




By Victoria Ward, 


The Telegraph Monday 15 June 2015




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